[TOPIC] How to choose an SD card reader? Introducing points and usage to choose

For smartphones and tablets other than some models such as iPhone, digital cameras, and drive recorders, many people may be using an SD card as a data storage destination, because of insufficient internal storage capacity, no internal storage, or to share saved data with other devices like computers. However, some PCs do not have a slot for SD cards. If you want to read data in an SD card with a device that does not support an SD card, it is convenient to use an “SD card reader”. In this content, we introduces how to use and select an SD card reader.


  1. 1. How to use an SD card reader
  2. 2. How to choose an SD card reader
  3. 2-1. Select by compatible media and compatible OS
  4. 2-2. Select by transfer speed
  5. 2-3. Select by connection standard
  6. 3. Conclusion. SD card reader is an easy-to-use device

・1. How to use an SD card reader
iPhones and some PCs do not have slots for SD cards. If you want to read data in an SD card with those devices, you need a separate “SD card reader”. If you have it, you are able to read and check data on an SD card even for products that cannot be connected to an SD card.
An SD card reader can be used easily and conveniently because you can use it without an Internet and it does not take time to read data depending on line conditions. Recently, the number of compact SD card readers has increased, and many of them can be carried with smartphones.

・2. How to choose an SD card reader
Although it is a simple and convenient SD card reader, there are various types depending on an application and usage scene. You need to consider how to select it. Here, we introduces points of selection that you should check when purchasing an SD card reader.

・2-1. Select by compatible media and compatible OS
There are different types of SD cards, SD, microSD, and miniSD, depending on the size standard. In addition to the size standard, there are three standards, SD, SDHC, and SDXC, depending on the capacity. It is necessary to check whether the card reader supports these standards.
Also, some card readers are compatible with not only SD cards but also Memory Sticks and CompactFlash. Choose the one that suits your needs. In particular, if you want to import photos taken with your smartphone to your computer, you need a card reader that supports microSD.
Since a supported OS such as Windows, Mac, and Android differs depending on the card reader, be sure to check which OS is supported.

・2-2. Select by transfer speed
If you want to import a large amount of data such as videos and photos to your computer, the transfer speed of the SD card reader is also important. Some SD card readers have a standard called “UHS Speed Class”. “UHS” is an abbreviation for “Ultra High Speed”, and “UHS Speed Class” is an index that guarantees the minimum transfer speed. There are 1 to 3 types of “UHS speed class”, and the larger the number, the faster the transfer speed. Since card readers that support “UHS speed class” can transfer data at higher speeds, so those who want to stick to transfer speed should check the description of “UHS speed class” when choosing an SD card reader.

・2-3. Select by connection standard
SD card readers are used by connecting to devices such as personal computers and smartphones. There are roughly three types of connection standards: “USB”, “Lightning”, and “Wi-Fi”.
“USB” is a connection standard that is often used in personal computers. There are multiple standards such as “USB2.0”, “USB3.0”, and “USB Type-C”, and the transfer speed differs for each.
“Lightning” is a connection standard mainly used by Apple products such as iPhone. Since iPhone does not have a slot for installing an SD card, a Lightning connection standard SD card reader is required if you want to use the data in the SD card on the iPhone.
If an SD card reader is labeled “Wi-Fi”, you can connect a device to the SD card reader wirelessly. You can connect to various terminals as long as you can use Wi-Fi, although there are few product choices and the price is high. Also note that Wi-Fi compatible SD card readers are larger and bulkier than other products.

・3. Conclusion. SD card reader is an easy-to-use device
If you have an SD card reader, you can use it for various purposes such as reading SD card data and backing up data even on a PC, iPhone, iPad, that does not have an SD card slot. It is convenient to have an SD card reader. Since the supported media and standards are different, be sure to select the most suitable SD card reader for your application.

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